One of the topics we discuss often in our parenting classes is play – and for good reason. While play is important to a child’s social, emotional, and physical development, it also helps to strengthen the parent-child bond and improve family interactions. Research tells us that, when parents play with their children during the early childhood years, they learn how to interact positively with them, and thus become more supportive, cooperative, and have better communication. The result of these early interactions is that parents are then able to use what they have learned in play to support their children more effectively as they transition from home to school. This includes helping with homework, problem solving, and behavior management.
Now, not all play is the same. There are many different ways to play, and each provides its own unique benefits. Want to learn how you can take your play time to the next level? Check out this wonderful article from Montana State University’s Extension Service. It provides a detailed explanation of how play benefits children and parents, highlights various types of play, and even gives parents the chance to analyze how they play with their children.
Be sure to check out their Family and Human Development homepage as well! It features resource guides on a range of topics from building family strengths to bullying and children. They are definitely worth a look!
Article Link – The Importance of Play in Early Childhood Development
Homepage Link – Family and Human Development